Numerous Nigerians were perplexed as to how the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the main opposition party, would manage to hold its National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting without encountering any problems.
The meeting, on the other hand, went off without a hitch. The recommendation of the Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi- led party zoning committee, which advocated that the North and the South should switch locations, was ratified by the PDP governors and other party leaders. This means that members of the PDP from the South will compete for the positions currently held by members of the party from the North, and vice versa for the same positions. However, there were several factors at play in the absence of any disagreements or crises throughout the meeting.
That was largely due to an informal gathering attended by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and other PDP governors the night before the NEC meeting. In accordance with a report by the Punch, the important meeting took place in the Rivers Government Lodge in Abuja the night before the PDP National Executive Committee meeting. During the meeting, Wike and the other governors of the PDP came to a significant agreement. According to the agreement, the subject of zoning non- party positions (Executive and Legislative) should not be decided at the NEC. Following their agreement on that, they sought out to major party leaders, particularly those from the North, in an attempt to get them to agree to it as well.
They were all in agreement. The topic was not mentioned or resolved at the NEC meeting as a result of this decision. It was for this reason that the meeting proceeded without incident and without any arguments.
While Wike and the other PDP governors may have made a prudent move, it is possible that it may have an impact on them in the future, particularly on those from the South- east. This is due to the fact that major politicians from the North continue to assert their right to run for the PDP Presidential ticket in the run- up to the 2023 presidential election. Despite the fact that the PDP National Chairmanship has been assigned to the region, this is the case.
Again, the decision to avoid addressing and deciding the matter is akin to postponing a rainy day to a more convenient time. This is due to the fact that the issue would still come up and that it may not serve the interests of Wike and other PDP Governors from the South who have pushed for the area to receive the party’ s presidential nomination. This is due to the fact that the North may even have an advantage over the rest of the country because the National Chairman of the party will be from that region.
The decision Wike and others advocated against them may be used by PDP heavyweights from the North who wish to fight for the presidency in 2019.
For the simple reason that it was their own idea that the subject should not be addressed and decided at the NEC when it really mattered There are already calls from some PDP heavyweights in the North, such as former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and former Senate President Bukola Saraki, for the PDP presidential ticket to be made available for anyone interested in running.
It is possible that the North will gain an advantage as a result of the decision not to discuss the subject, as recommended by Wike and others.
If it had been addressed, there might have been differing points of view, debates, even kicks, but at the end of the day, it would have been designated to the southern half. This is due to the fact that it would be consistent with the swap, given that North produced the PDP candidate for President in 2019. Furthermore, according to PDP tradition, the National Chairman and the presidential candidate cannot be from the same geographical zone.